Once an older loved one decides to move to a senior living community, there are many decisions to make. One is when to list the senior’s house. For many people, a home is their biggest asset. The proceeds from its sale are needed to help finance this transition.
There’s no doubt about it, however, that moving can be stressful at any age. It’s especially true when it comes to an older person who has lived in their home for decades. They may have an emotional attachment to it that dates back to raising a family there.
So, how can you tell when the best time to sell a senior’s home is? We have some tips that might be helpful in making this decision.
Questions to Consider When Selling a Senior’s Home
- Are the proceeds from the home’s sale needed to finance this move?
For most people, a house is their largest asset. The equity in the home might be needed to finance this next chapter in life. If moving to senior living before the house is sold seems like the best choice, bridge loans might help.
These special types of loans will allow the older adult to use the equity in their house to pay for the monthly fees and expenses associated with moving. They essentially bridge the gap in financing. Once the house is sold, the senior can pay off the loan. Bridge loans are available from a variety of banks and lenders, as well as companies like Elder Life Financial and Second Act Financial Services.
- Can the senior keep the house show ready while living there?
Living in a house while it is on the market can be challenging. Buyers often have high expectations. A clean, clutter-free home gives buyers the impression that the home is well maintained. If you are in the process of downsizing and packing, keeping the house show ready at all times can be tough.
If it seems unrealistic for the senior to keep their home ready on short notice, selling after the move may be better. A professional home stager can be utilized afterward to help ensure the home looks warm and welcoming.
- Are your schedules flexible enough to accommodate multiple showings?
Potential buyers often have busy work schedules or come from out-of-town to find a house. This can translate to showings at odd hours. In a hot real estate market like the current one, a senior seller might also have multiple showings a day with many short notice requests.
Most times, the real estate agent will ask that homeowners leave the house for showings. This can be another inconvenience, especially for older adults who have mobility challenges. It is important to consider whether these interruptions will present a hardship.
- Will the senior’s budget accommodate paying for their house and monthly fees at a senior living community?
If an aging loved one moves before listing their home and it doesn’t sell as quickly as expected, will their budget accommodate the cost of two homes? Or will it cause too much stress? The housing market can be unpredictable. It’s important that you are realistic about how long the senior will be able to pay expenses in two locations.
Senior Move Managers and Certified Real Estate Agents
As you work your way through the decision-making process with your family member, there are two groups of professionals you may want to contact. One is a senior move manager®, and the other is a Seniors Real Estate Specialist® (SRES®). Both are expert at handling the unique needs of seniors who are transitioning from a private residence to a retirement community or simply to a smaller space.
Heritage Senior Communities in Michigan and Indiana
Heritage has senior living communities throughout Michigan and one in Indiana. Every day we work with adult children trying to find a community that is a good fit for their family members’ needs. We can also help create a transition plan for moving. Call the Heritage community nearest you to learn more!